Sunday, December 13, 2009

Chocolate Peanut Buttercups

Chocolate Peanut Buttercups - December 13, 2009

The title pretty much says it all - this has a graham cracker peanut crust which supports a chocolate cake filled with a peanut butter cream cheese filling and topped with chocolate ganache. You're supposed to garnish it with chopped peanuts but I ran out. Overall, this was pretty good. I ran out of chocolate cake batter though so had to stretch it out towards the end. The peanut butter cream cheese filling was also a little stiff compared to the softer cake batter so getting it in as an even dollop of filling was problematic. I admit I didn't try that hard either.

This is one of those recipes I'd like to make in smaller pans, like muffin tins with removable bottoms. The only pan I have with removable bottoms is my molten chocolate cake pan and it makes for some big peanut buttercups. I made smaller ones in a regular muffin tin but I had to line each one with aluminum foil so I could take it out of the pan easily. Those didn't look as pretty as the ones in the molten chocolate cake pan.

The recipe calls for ganache which I made but I'm not a fan of ganache. Ganache is simple chocolate and heavy cream melted and whisked together. While a boon for serious chocoholics, I don't find it sweet enough for me and would prefer a more traditional chocolate frosting. But still, this is a cute little cake to make for holiday baking.

Chocolate Peanut Buttercups - recipe from the July 1999 issue of Chocolatier Magazine

Peanut-graham cracker crust
1 cup unsalted dry roasted peanuts, finely chopped
½ cup graham cracker crumbs
¼ cup granulated sugar
¼ cup (½ stick) unsalted butter, melted

Chocolate batter
10 tablespoons unsalted butter
5 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
3 ounces unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1 large egg yolk
½ cup packed dark brown sugar
½ cup granulated sugar
¼ cup all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon salt

Peanut butter batter
4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
2 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 large egg yolk

Chocolate glaze
¼ cup heavy cream
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

1 tablespoon dry roasted peanuts

1. Make the peanut-graham cracker crust: Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350˚F. Place twelve 4-ounce metal baking cups or ceramic ramekins on a baking sheet. In a medium bowl stir together the peanuts, graham cracker crumbs, sugar and butter until well-combined. Press 2 tablespoons of the crumb mixture into the bottom of each baking cup. Bake until slightly firm, about 5 to 7 minutes. Reserve.
2. Make the chocolate batter: In a medium saucepan over low heat, stir together the butter, bittersweet chocolate and unsweetened chocolate until melted and smooth. Remove the pan from the heat; cool 3 to 5 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, in a large bowl whisk together the eggs, egg yolk, brown sugar and granulated sugar until well-combined. Stir in the melted chocolate mixture. Fold in the flour and salt until just incorporated. Reserve.
4. Make the peanut butter batter: In small bowl, beat together the cream cheese, peanut butter, sugar, and yolk until combined.
5. Assemble the chocolate peanut butter cups: Drop 2 tablespoons of the chocolate batter on top of the peanut crust; level with a small spatula. Form 1 tablespoon of the peanut butter batter into a disc; place over the chocolate batter. Top peanut butter batter with 2 more tablespoons of the chocolate batter. Repeat this process for the remaining baking cups. Bake 18 minutes on a baking sheet until the centers are set. Transfer baking cups to a wire rack; cool to room temperature, about 1 hour.
6. Make the chocolate glaze: In a small, heavy saucepan over high heat, bring the heavy cream to a boil. Remove the pan from the heat; stir in the chocolate. Whisk until the mixture is smooth. Transfer the ganache to a bowl; cool until thick enough to spread, about 15 to 20 minutes. Place baking cups over low heat for 5 to 10 seconds if necessary to loosen the bottom. Unmold and place crust-side-down on a serving platter. With an offset spatula spread 1 heaping tablespoon of the glaze over top of each chocolate-peanut butter cup. Garnish with peanut halves.
Lark's Country Heart

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